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Nike hits all-time high after earnings beat

Shares of Nike rose to an intraday high of $136.39 on Wednesday after the company reported better-than-expected earnings.

The sports apparel maker said Tuesdsay its performance was boosted by a 20 percent jump in future orders.

CNBC's Jim Cramer said Wednesday that Nike has also found the perfect balance between its short- and long-term goals.

"They are the best at that [out] of any manufacturer in the world today," he said on "Squawk on the Street." "This is so impressive. These numbers are three, four times what anyone else is doing."

After setting the intraday high, Nike shares retreated. By late morning, the price was down about more than 1½ percent on the day. On the year, they have outperformed rival Under Armour, gaining over 35 percent to UA's 20 percent.

Nike (Blue) versus Under Armour (Green) YTD (%)Source: FactSet

Nike has also contributed the most gain to the Dow Jones industrial average this year.

"There is a big global trend toward health and wellness and more casual dressing, and we think Nike is in the best position to capitalize on it," Jay Sole, lead retail analyst at Morgan Stanley, told "Squawk on the Street" on Wednesday.

Another reason for Sole's bullishness on Nike involves its performance in China. Nike's China sales grew by 28 percent during last quarter. He said the Chinese government is planning a huge expansion of its sports industry over the next 10 years.

"The China number is very important because it shows that Nike is able to capitalize on the fitness craze that's going on in China," Sole said.

DISCLOSURES: Cramer's trust did not own Nike shares when this article was published.